Married GP struck off after sex-for-sleeping-tablets affair with 22-year-old patient

A married GP has been struck off over an affair with a patient 31 years his junior who claimed she had sex with him in exchange for sleeping tablets, a disciplinary tribunal has heard.

Goksel Celikkol was 55 when he had his extra-marital fling with the 22-year-old woman who said she felt “trapped” in their relationship because she needed him to give her prescription medication.

Celikkol, who was a club doctor for Blackpool Football Club, had begun the ten-month affair after he touched the patient inappropriately during an “out of hours” intimate examination in 1999.

The court heard during the fling he would prescribe her with excess doses of Zopiclone, a sleeping medication, so she could take up to double the daily recommended amount.

The affair broke up when the woman moved to Scotland where she registered with a different GP.

But Celikkol continued to prescribe her the tablets including Prozac and the appetite suppressant Reductil, initially sending them by post before using her on-off boyfriend’s address, the hearing was told.

Initially, the woman, known as Ms A, did not report Celikkol but in 2017 wrote a “story” about her experiences whilst undergoing counselling.

‘He was very forceful’

In a statement the woman, a widow now 45, said: “At the time I was in floods of tears and I was asking him to help me as I was very depressed and lonely but Dr Celikkol prescribed me more anti-depressants and asked me out for lunch with him. I agreed as I naively thought he asked me as he could see how alone I was, I did not think he would make any physical advances towards me.”

Recalling the early days of the fling she said: “We went to a restaurant and had a nice lunch and when we got back into his car afterwards he kissed me and I was gobsmacked.

“I don’t recall any conversation we had, but he was very forceful. I was sitting on the passenger seat and he was leaning right over into the passenger seat so I felt I had no choice but to kiss him.

“I didn’t want to have sex but I felt trapped in a situation I didn’t know how to get out of because he was also prescribing me medication I really needed at that time.

“I hated the situation. He was about 30 years older than me so I had no attraction to him whatsoever – I just felt I was trapped in a situation I had no idea how to get out of. I the only way to make it stop was to literally leave the country decided.”

‘Serious abuse of trust’

At the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service in Manchester, Celikkol, now 78 and who qualified in his native Turkey in 1968, was found guilty of serious professional misconduct.

He retired from practice in 2018 but will now be unable to treat patients if he tries to resume his 54-year medical career.

Police questioned the disgraced GP about the fling but it is thought no criminal action was taken against him.

Panel chairman Angus Macpherson said: “Dr Celikkol had a professional obligation to observe proper boundaries with his patients, and particularly with a patient who was vulnerable, and that he was, by his own account, happily married.

“Patient A had a right to expect that he would treat and care for her appropriately. Instead, he exploited her position as her doctor and succumbed to the sexual feelings which he had developed toward her. This was an extremely serious abuse of trust.”

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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